Thursday, March 12, 2015

The middle child

This blog initially started out all about Bella. I once made a better attempt to keep it that way and continued to keep my own private blog. I still do keep that blog but I also think it's important to realize that my other children do not get neglected because of Bella. I debated writing this but this is us, this is real, this is our life.

Four years ago today, our second child, our first son entered this world, who is also now a middle child. I have a hard time admitting that I can't remember much about his birth. It was a world wind time in our lives. I do remember crying during my labor and yelling that I could not do this and I just wanted a c-section. That was not the way he wanted to enter the world. He came in at a whopping 8 lbs 11 oz, 3 whole pounds more than his sister! I remember is brown hair, and them plopping his little body onto my belly, something that didn't happen during Bella's birth. I remember the immense amount of love that filled my heart. I remember feeling proud that I could love two children equally, something I initially feared.  I was blessed beyond words, one daughter and one son, I knew there would be more at some point in time. I knew in my heart he would not be our last. 

He was the easiest baby! The polar opposite of his high strung, nosey sister. From day one, she hated sleep as if it were the devil. She would fight it tooth and nail. She needed constant motion and stimulation. I would put her in the Moby and walk the block to keep her quiet. Not Grayson, he was chill as a cucumber. Cool and calm, mellow. He slept! Sweet baby Jesus there was a GOD! 

He was and still is a clown. A smile that lights up the block. His laughter is contagious. He's sweet and mellow most times. He's sensitive and stubborn too. He has a heart of gold. He's constantly thinking about someone else and what he can do to help them. When Bella is at school and we leave to do something fun, he verbalizes how much he wishes she was here to go with us. We went for donuts this morning and he picked out the donut that he knew would be her favorite, pink icing with sprinkles. He lives for the minute she comes home from school. At dinner, he snorts like a pig and makes us die laughing. His pig snorts are the best!

He's a boy through and through. He loves the cottage, being sweaty and toads in his hands. He hunts for worms in mud piles and carries them around forever. I'm surprised I haven't found one in a pocket when I do laundry! He used to call them "nakes". He loves holding little bugs or critters so Luca can see them. Luca is a bit more timid when it comes to live animals. 
Happy birthday my sweet son. Happy Birthday, Grayson John. Words do not do justice for the amount of love my heart holds for you. Your calm, go with the flow attitude is just what this family needs. Your big cheesy grins and pig snorts at the table, they make me laugh so hard my belly hurts. I love you to the ends of the earth my handsome son. I love your cuddly nature and your love of back rubs. I'm happy to cuddle with you or rub your back any day of the week. Thank you for reminding your busy mama to slow down, to enjoy these moments. You help me remember that they will be gone before I know it. There will come a day when you don't want me to climb up on your top bunk and sing to you while rubbing your back. Until then, I'll continue. I love you Mr Moose! 

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Death and dying and PaPa John

"Mom, the doctors are suposed to fix you. How come they didn't fix your daddy?"

That's a question Bella has asked me many times and yet I still don't have an answer that seems "right". Today marks the 4th anniversary of my father's death. Bella is the only child my dad got to hold in his arms, play with, skype with and watch me parent. Today, is a better day for the first time in 4 years.

"Mom, people should die of old age. Your dad wasn't very old."

"Mom when you die, can you be turned to ashes so I can keep you on my dresser like you keep PaPa John on your dresser."

"Mom, do you talk to PaPa John sometimes?"
"Mom will we ever see your daddy again"

"Mom, I had a dream about your dad last night. He was helping us fix things at our house"

"Mom, I drew this picture of your daddy so you didn't have to miss him and you could remember him"

"PaPa, see him? Touch him?" *as Luca points to the ashes in the jar on my dresser*

"Mom, tell me about your daddy"

"Mom, I'm sorry that you are sad and miss your dad. I'm sorry that your dad died"

"Mom my middle name is John just like my PaPa's name"

"Mom can we talk about your daddy?"
Ah the questions... they come up at random moments, usually when I'm least prepared to answer them or when my heart feels ok. The emotions flood my body each time the kids bring him up. Please don't cry, be strong, I tell myself. PULL IT TOGETHER! Sometimes I do, sometimes... well sometimes, not so much. My body no longer shakes when I cry and when I talk about him to my children. I'm able to look at pictures of him and talk about him more. I'm able to share stories more frequently about what he was like, what he loved, what kind of daddy and person he was and what he looked like. Sometimes the tears roll down my face when we talk about him, usually my children wipe my tears before I have a chance to wipe them myself.

My children know more about death and dying then I ever thought they would. It breaks my heart that this is a normal thing in our house. It's reality though. Anytime PaPa John comes up we talk about how he lives in Heaven and watches over us and how he sees all that we are doing even though he's not here. We talk about how we can see him in our dreams and sometimes even touch him, how he lives in our hearts and sometimes we can feel him around us. It's life as a mom who's dad passed away far too early. Life is not fair. Until we meet again, I'll keep his memory alive through my children. I'll feel his breath in the wind on my face.

CAMP NO LIMITS all booked!

This picture was taken just last weekend while we were camping. Bella and I were walking around the camp ground just the girls. Dirty from...